Plant Calendar

Gorse (Ulex Europaeus)

A familiar, impenetrable, thicket-forming, sharply spiny shrub. Spines furrowed and straight. downy when young. Gorse has rich golden yellow, pea flowers throughout the year. The pods which are hairy and black, burst loudly on hot summer days. The plant grows on grasslands, moors, heath, scrub, open woods, on chalk downs and is often on sand or peat; widespread, common. Also known as furze and whin.


Chaenomeles Japonica (Cydonia maulei Japanese Quince)

Grows near the War Memorial in the Garden of Remembrance. A deciduous shrub native to Eastern Asia.  The single flowers, 4cm across, are at first cup-shaped, then opening out a dashing, brownish-red with yellow anthers.  They often flower from February to May and again in the Autumn. The very decorative fruit are quince-like, irregular and golden-yellow with a sweet and peircing scent.

Berberis (Barberry)

The berberis plants in the memorial garden are evergreen and believed to be Berberis Darwinii.  Early flowering with rich orange-yellow flowers. The leaves are like small shields.  The shrub grows to 4 to 6 feet and produces purplish-blue berries.

Bracket Fungus

The photograph shows a bracket fungus, possibly Trametes Versicolor.  Found on the wood of broad-leafed trees, weakly parasitic, rarely found on conifers or sawn timber.  Usually in small to large dense overlapping groups.  All year. Widespread.  Perhaps the commonest British macro-fungus.  Still widely known under the old name Coriolus Versicolor.

Lesser Celandine (Ranunculus Ficaria)

One of the first heralds of spring; low, hairless perennial.  Flowers yellow with 7 to 12 rather narrow, glossy petals – February to May.  Leaves long-stalked, heart-shaped and dark green.  Common in shady places – grassland, woods, hedges and waysides.

 

Green Alkanet (Pentaglottis Sempervirens

A tufted, roughly hairy, medium to tall perennial.  Flowers bright blue with white honey guides – March to July.  Leaves oval, abruptly contracted at the base, the lower stalked.  Hedges, wood borders, waysides, a rapidly spreading native, often also a garden escape.

Catsear (Hypochaeris Radicat)

This is one of a group of hawkbits, hawkbeards and hawkweeds belonging to the daisy family.  Short to medium (to 60cm) perennial with short scale-like bracts up the little-branched, leafless stems.  Flowers yellow, leaves in a basal rosette.  Short turf or sparesly grassy places.

Spear Thistle (Cirsium Vulgare)

Our commonest large-flowered thistle, a tall, stout, biennial with spiny-winged stems to 1.5m.  Flowers purple 20 to 44mm, often solitary, the bracts with yellow tipped spines: July to September.  Common in grassy and waste spaces, waysides.

Haresfoot Clover (Trifolium Arvense)

Short, erect, soft, hairy, annual to 20cm.  Flowers small, white immersed in long, pink hairs of calyx, June to September.  Dry grassy, often bare or sandy places, dunes usually avoiding lime.

Yarrow (Achillea Millefolium

A downy, dark green, strongly aromatic, short to medium perennial, with creeping runners, but erect and little branched to 80cm. Flowers are white, sometimes tinged pale or deep pink by cross pollination from the many, deep pink cultivars in gardens, 4-6 mm, the disc florets creamy, many in a flat umble-like head; June to December. Leaves long, narrow, rather feathery. Grassy places.

Pendunculate Oak or English Oak (Quercus Robur)

The King of the Forest, Britain’s legacy of oaks far exceeds that of any other European country. Round spreading outline. Trunk often of great girth. Rough bark and stubby twigs with bright brown buds. Deciduous. The leaves appear April to May and are bright green. Flowers in May. Male flowers hang with female flowers upright. Both are on the same tree. Pollination is by wind. The acorns begin to show in early summer and are ripe in September. The normal, full-grown height is 30 to 40 metres.


November
Cotoneaster Simonsii

There are at least 45 genus of this species in Britain, most of them originating from South-East Asia, which have become naturalised as a result of bird-sown seed. The number is likely to increase given that there are now some 80 species being cultivated for their ornamental fruits that are attractive to birds. There is only one variety which is a native shrub which grows on the limestone cliffs of Great Orme Head, Caernarvonshire